All Kinds of New Things – Christopher Novak

When I arrived in Rome, the last thing that I thought I’d be doing was an internship. I thought I’d give the opportunity a chance, however, and I’m quite glad that I did. As I looked through my options at the beginning of the semester, one caught my eye: Ittec SRL. It’s a small firm that performs IT services for a variety of companies, and has a financial forecasting branch, Quantum Forecasting, that uses computer software to predict changing market values. With my Finance major and Computer Science minor, this was clearly a perfect fit, and, after a brief interview, my work began.

My assignment is to help in redesigning the Quantum Forecasting website. This means analyzing and optimizing the content, aesthetics, flow, and user friendliness of the many different web pages, which is quite a significant task. Luckily, I have a great partner in crime. He emigrated from the Philippines a while back, so he’s not Italian like many of my other fellow interns’ coworkers, but I’ve still learned a lot, culturally, by talking with him.  Manuel had been at Ittec for seven years, and works on a variety of projects for the firm, particularly the web maintenance for Quantum.

Things are going pretty well. I visit the office once per week for a couple of hours and do the rest of my internship work from home, since the commute is so substantial. Typically, upon arrival, I present my current ideas for the website to my colleague. We discuss these ideas, determine how we would like to implement them, and decide what we need to look at next. After this discussion, we get down to the base of the web design process: programming. I’ve done a good bit of programming in the past, but never for a website. This is an exciting opportunity and learning experience for me. My colleague has been showing me how to manipulate different graphical variables on a web page, and I plan to use this knowledge in helping him redesign the Quantum site.

Overall, my Ittec internship has been wonderful thus far. I’m being exposed to all kinds of new things, from web design and programming to Italian immigrant culture. I am excited about what is happening now, but even more excited about what’s to come.